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Submission + - 'Space-time cloak' could conceal events (cnn.com) 1

DeadBugs writes: New materials with the ability to manipulate the speed of light could enable the creation of a "space-time cloak" capable of masking events or even creating an illusion of "Star Trek"-style transportation, according to scientists in London.
Earth

Submission + - The Story Of My As Yet Unverified Impact Crater. 3

tetrahedrassface writes: When I was very young my dad took me on a trip to his parents farm. He wanted to show me 'The Crater'. We walked a long way through second generation hardwoods and finally stood on the rim of a hole that has no equal in this area. As I grew up I became more interested in 'The Crater", and would always tell friends about it. It is roughly 1,200 feet across, and 120 feet deep, and has a strange vibe about it. When you walk up to it, you feel like something really big happened here. Either the mother of all caves is down there, or a large object smashed into this place a long, long time ago. I bought aerial photo's when I was twelve and later send images from GIS to a geologist at a local university and he pretty much laughed me out of his office, saying that it was a sinkhole. He did wish me luck however. It may be sinkhole. Who knows?

Last week I borrowed a metal detector and went poking around, and have found the strangest shrapnel pieces I have ever seen. They are composed of a metal that reacts strongly to acids. The largest piece so far reacted with tap water and dishwashing detergent. My second trip today yielded lots of strange new pieces of metal, and hopefully one day the truth either way will be known. Backyard science is so much fun and who knows, ff it is indeed a cave maybe Cerberus resides there.
Space

Construction On Spaceship Factory Set To Begin In the Mojave 147

angry tapir writes "A production facility that would build the world's first fleet of commercial spaceships is set to begin construction on Tuesday at the Mojave Air and Space Port. The facility will be home to The Spaceship Co, or TSC — a joint venture owned by Mojave-based Scaled Composites and British billionaire Richard Branson's space tourism company, Virgin Galactic."
Idle

Submission + - 50 office-speak phrases you love to hate

SpaghettiPattern writes: I wouldn't want to wrongside the /. demographic by don't letting them come to the party, so it's time to get all our ducks in a row and sprinkle some BBC magic onto my dear stakeholders. The BBC runs an article that goes forward in 360-degree thinking about the challenge posed by office-speak.
Oh, I can't stand this any longer so I'll move forward.
Science

Submission + - Destroy Earth From the Comfort of Your Computer (purdue.edu)

zrbyte writes: There have been numerous discussions on /. regarding the matter of a large asteroid hitting the Earth, its consequences and how to avoid such a catastrophe. Now, researchers from the University of Arizona and Imperial College London have produced a software that lets you have a free swing at the Earth by the impactor of your choice. They have a nice web interface that makes creating doomsday scenarios a snap.

Just type in a few variables such as diameter, density, and velocity and Impact: Earth! will send a comet or asteroid hurtling toward our planet. Lest you be unsatisfied with a simulation of a massive rock barreling down on us, the Web site also provides data on the aftermath, including the size of the crater, the extent of the fireball, and even the height of the tsunami wave, should the object crash into the ocean.

Details on the calculations can be found in a paper published by the researchers.

Submission + - Chip allows blind people to see (medicalnewstoday.com)

crabel writes: 3 blind people got implanted with a retinal chip that allowed them to see shapes and objects within days of the procedure.
"One of the patients surprised researchers by identifying and locating objects on a table; he was also able to walk around a room unaided, approach specific people, tell the time from a clock face, and describe seven different shades of gray in front of him."

Games

Submission + - typewriter hacked to play Zork, responds to typing

UgLyPuNk writes: Typewriters that can type by themselves are one thing. Typewriters that can type by themselves and play Zork are totally different – the stuff that dreams are made of (at least the dreams of little girls who spent hours in front of a Commodore 64 telling the machine to GO NORTH and such).
Music

Submission + - Licensing Music Source?

David Greene writes: Over the years I have used Lilypond to produce some interesting musical works, mostly fake-book-like sheets and a few original compositions. I would like to share these with a larger community in the same way the GPL encourages software sharing. That is, I want to encourage modification and improvement of the "source code" while ensuring such modifications are available under the same licensing terms. In addition, I would like to have a requirement that performances, recordings, etc. of the music include full access to the "source" used for such productions. My primary motivation here is to encourage learning from such recordings, for example making lead sheets available for improvised performances so students can see the chord progressions and structure of the music. Performances of arranged music should include the "source" to the full arrangement, and so on. Is there any license in existence that would fulfill these requirements? The various Creative Commons licenses don't say anything about this kind of music "source code."
Security

Submission + - China Reverse Engineered Classified NSA OS 2

Pickens writes: "Seymour M. Hersh writes in the New Yorker that China has managed to reverse-engineered a Classified NSA operating system, estimated at between thirty and fifty million lines of computer code, giving China a road map for decrypting the US Navy’s classified intelligence and operational data. The story begins after an American EP-3E Aries II reconnaissance plane on an eavesdropping mission collided with a Chinese interceptor jet over the South China Sea in 2001 and landed at a Chinese F-8 fighter base on Hainan Island, the 24 member crew were unable to completely disable the plane’s equipment and software. Hersh writes that crew of the EP-3E managed to erase the hard drive—“zeroed it out”—but did not destroy the hardware, which left data retrievable: “No one took a hammer.” The Navy’s experts didn’t believe that China was capable of reverse-engineering the plane’s NSA-supplied operating system, but over the next few years the US intelligence community began to “read the tells” that China had gotten access to sensitive traffic and in early 2009, Admiral Timothy J. Keating, then the head of the Pacific Command, brought the issue to the new Obama Administration. "If China had reverse-engineered the EP-3E’s operating system, all such systems in the Navy would have to be replaced, at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars," writes Hersch. "After much discussion, several current and former officials said, this was done.""

Submission + - Photos: The engineering work behind FTTP broadband (pcpro.co.uk)

nk497 writes: UK ISP BT has offered a behind the scenes look at its fibre-to-the-premise trial in Milton Keynes, showing the work required by engineers to get fibre to homes in that city. There’s 600km of cables as well as 4,000 manifolds and 1,000 distribution points to install — all to bring fibre broadband to 11,500 homes. All that cable must be pulled through ducts by hand. After that, fibre is blown through the tubes using pressurised air and spliced together to link up homes to the network. Getting fibre the last several yards from the main network infrastructure to homes takes seven hours per home, BT said.
Music

Submission + - End of an Era: Sony Discontinues the Walkman

Ponca City writes: "Crunchgear reports that after selling 200,020,000 units worldwide since its inception over thirty years ago, Sony has announced that it is pulling the plug on the manufacture and sales of the Walkman, the world’s first portable (mass-produced) stereo. Magnetic cassette technology had been around since 1963 when Philips first created it for use by secretaries and journalists, but on July 1, 1979, Sony Corp. introduced the Sony Walkman TPS-L2, a 14 ounce, blue-and-silver, portable cassette player with chunky buttons, headphones, a leather case, and a second earphone jack so that two people could listen in at once. The Walkman was originally introduced in the US as the "Sound-About" and in the UK as the "Stowaway," but coming up with new, uncopyrighted names in every country it was marketed in proved costly so Sony eventually decided on "Walkman" as a play on the Sony Pressman, a mono cassette recorder the first Walkman prototype was based on. The 1980s became the Walkman decade. The popularity of Sony's device — and those by brands like Aiwa, Panasonic and Toshiba who followed in Sony's lead — helped the cassette tape outsell vinyl records for the first time in 1983 as Sony continued to roll out variations on its theme with over 300 different Walkman models, adding such innovations as AM/FM receivers, bass boost and auto-reverse on later models and even producing a solar-powered Walkman, water-resistant Sport Walkman and Walkmen with two cassette drives. So what is the legacy of the Walkman? "I remember it fondly as a way to enjoy what music I liked, where I liked," says Alan Campbell. "But when I see it now, I wonder how I carried it!""
Transportation

Submission + - Mazda's New Engine Gets 70 MPG WITHOUT a Hybrid (greencarreports.com)

thecarchik writes: There’s no word on when the new version of the Mazda2 will finally reach the U.S. but when it does we can reveal that it will return a fuel economy of 70 mpg--without the aid of any electric motors. This is because the car will feature Mazda’s next-generation of drivetrain, body and chassis technologies, dubbed SKYACTIV.The new Mazda 2 will come powered by a SKYACTIV-G engine, Mazda's next-generation direct injection gasoline mill that achieves significantly improved fuel efficiency thanks to a high compression ratio of 14.0:1 (the world’s highest for a production gasoline engine). In addition to the improved fuel economy, Mazda also claims that the higher compression ratio enables more torque, especially at lower to mid-range engine speeds, which should make the car a whole lot more fun to drive around the town.
Government

Submission + - IG: FBI's Sentinel program still off-track, over b (thehill.com)

GovTechGuy writes: The FBI's new system for managing case files is $100 million over budget and two years behind schedule, according to a new inspector general's report. Sentinel is the successor to the FBI's troubled Virtual Case File system, which was canceled in 2005 after the agency invested $170 million into its development. Lawmakers blasted the news, while an independent estimate by The Mitre Corp. predicted that completing Sentinel using the FBI's current approach would cost an additional $351 million and take six more years.
Robotics

Submission + - Laser powered UAV heli flight record (suasnews.com)

garymortimer writes: LaserMotive, an independent R&D company specializing in laser power beaming and winner of the 2009 NASA-sponsored Power Beaming Competition, today announced it will attempt to break its own world record for laser-powered helicopter flight at the Future of Flight Aviation Center located at 8415 Paine Field Blvd. in Mukilteo, Wash., starting Wednesday, October 27.

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